Tessa Quayle -- young, beautiful, and dearly beloved to husband Justin -- is gruesomely murdered in northern Kenya. When Justin sets out on a personal odyssey to uncover the mystery of her death, what he finds could make him not only a suspect, but also a target for Tessa's killers.
A master chronicler of the betrayals of ordinary people caught in political conflict, John le Carré portrays the dark side of unbridled capitalism as only he can. In The Constant Gardener he tells a compelling, complex story of a man elevated through tragedy, as Justin Quayle -- amateur gardener, aging widower, and ineffectual bureaucrat -- discovers his own natural resources and the extraordinary courage of the woman he barely had time to love....Continua
..libro inutilmente lungo, oltremodo stancante. C'ho messo un anno a finirlo, la storia appassiona a tratti ma ci sono alcuni capitoli completamente inutili. La storia potrebbe essere una denuncia sull'operato delle case farmaceutiche nei confronti dei paesi del terzo mondo, tuttavia sarebbe stato più opportuno forse scrivere un saggio, in ogni caso solo per questo motivo e per la stima che nutro nei confronti dell'autore assegno la seconda stelletta....Continua
Halfway through, I was getting bored because of the overly detailed descriptions of the inner workings of the international aid community. But this is my first John le Carre book and I really wanted to like it. Unfortunately, the story never really took off for me, and I was "what, that was it?!"
Read my full review here: http://guiltlessreading.blogspot.com/2011/07/constant-gardener-by-john-le-carre.html
Well, of course I have to admit such an ending is unavoidable, as it is very hard to fight against the System. Yet, it just disappoints me that Justin can't find a way to fight back and get vengeance for Tessa.
This is the first le Carre' novel I've ever read. I bought this one simply because someone recommended it to me, not because of the movie. I had no idea there was a movie until just now, when I read some of the reviews! Then I checked the IMDB and think that Ralph Fiennes didn't look so much older than the Tessa in the film. :P
Something that I didn't know about is that John le Carre' is from England. I just started ploughing through the book and thought that the author has a very British way of writing. And then, bingo! He is British, really! But the informal language used in the novel really pushed me to check the dictionary. Well, in this way I've also learned something new.
For me the most thrilling part is when Justin is traveling around and looking into the whole affair. It seems that he is constantly spied on wherever he goes. It just gives creeps when I read these parts. But there is something I don't quite understand. When he was in Bielefeld, Germany, he talked with Birgit. And Birgit mentioned the word "roman." It seems to me Birgit didn't know what Roman meant and it was Justin that told her that Roman means "novel." But isn't Birgit German? This is really beyond me!
All this corruption depicted in the novel, according to the author, is as mild as a postcard photo in terms of its truthfulness. This is really appalling and makes one feel most depressed. How can one fight against the System when the System is determined to have its own way?
There are portions in the novel that are kind of really detailed and a bit boring, especially at the beginning when one is not really used to the author's style. Nevertheless, I would recommend this book as a good thriller. Something like a "spy" novel.
This was the first novel by Le Carre I have red and I am stunned by how thrilling and exciting it is. Justin's desperate adventure to find out more about his wife is gripping. More importantly, Le Carre balances fiction and reality to describe some aspects of capitalism in Africa. Beautifully written....Continua
There were long parts of the book that were quite boring, transcripts of interviews that the police in the story did with Tessa's possible killer(s), the head of Three Bees (large drug company), etc. But then there were parts of the book that were very fulfilling...however, I got to the point where I read about 10 other books before getting back to this one, and now that I am back, I realize I can't finish it.
Although I try to not see movies of books before reading the book, I did see this movie first, and it was very good...I think it plows thru the slower parts of the book...I guess, I would recommend seeing the movie, unless you like this dry, slow style of writing.